BUYING NEW WINDOWS
A LESSON LEARNED IN BUYING NEW WINDOWS
Mrs. D has new leaky windows
This was an unusual week for me out in the field. I recently visited with a very nice lady in Northwest Austin. She lived alone and said she was having issues with her windows. Mrs. D asked if I could provide a bid to replace her windows, 7 in total. When I arrived at her home, I was surprised to find 7 very new-looking vinyl windows. In fact, she had recently installed new windows through a nationally franchised window company that sells windows with a “one-price-fits-all” scheme. After buying new windows, within one year of installation, 6 of her windows leaked.
Mrs. D was beside herself about what to do. The thought of never leaving her home for fear of leaks during rainstorms actually altered her life. She stays at home because she’s afraid to leave and suffer water damage. The uncertainty and unease in her voice was palpable.
Her window company sent several different guys out to her home but they never fixed the leaks. They eventually completely replaced ONE of the windows! After inspecting her windows, I suspect they suffer from internal flaws that occurred during manufacturing. Her windows definitely held water, so they never properly drained. These new windows leak into her home every time it rains due to internal manufacturing issues.
Should Buying New Windows Come to This?
IT’S DIFFICULT COMPARING WINDOWS
I often acknowledge the fact that one window looks like another when set side by side during a comparison. We really do understand how people might equate similar looking products as EQUALS but the reality is that you often get what you pay for when buying new windows. When an individual or a company sells someone a cheap and inexpensive window, it’s rarely a well-built and high quality product. We see it all the time! There are a number of window companies and individuals in Central Texas that routinely sell new construction vinyl windows as replacement-grade products. Well, as Mrs. D found out, the cheapest price when buying new windows will likely cost her dearly.
WHEN BUYING NEW WINDOWS UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU ARE GETTING
Know What You are Paying For!
Further adding insult to her issues, I also detected that her discount windows contained a very weak Low-E. As I walked by a bank of windows in her Master Bedroom, I could feel the heat radiating from the afternoon sun and I knew something wasn’t right. Not only did her window company sell her leaky windows, but they were horribly inefficient as well.
The process of learning about buying new windows requires work on the average consumers part. As it turns out, Mrs. D’s window company is a large national franchised window business and very well advertised in the Austin area. They don’t make their own windows! They purchase their windows from a 3rd party manufacturer through a national contract. Then, they resell them to their local franchise owners who install them into your home using the cheapest sub-contractors they can find.
As a steward of the window industry, it makes me ill to see what happened to Mrs. D. At Ringer Windows, we focus on high quality, even with our builder-grade products. This particular window company took advantage of her and she’ll likely have to spend hard-earned money buying new windows again to replace all these windows a second time. My message to anyone reading my blogs is simple. There’s a lot more to buying new windows than the cheapest price. Take the time to ask about thermal ratings, structural ratings, and certifications. How thick is the glass and are they buying new windows with the most powerful Low-E possible? What kind of Balance System is in the window and how are they made? If possible, take a visit to the manufacturing facility and watch them make windows! See and feel how the windows operate in an installed setting! If a window isn’t operating that is a strong signal to continue your search elsewhere when you consider buying new windows.
Time to Study when buying new windows
DO YOUR HOMEWORK CONSUMERS!
There are so many questions that informed consumers MUST ask! High quality windows that provide superior energy efficiency don’t have to cost a fortune! With a little work, and a few questions, the average consumer can more easily identify cheaply made windows that masquerade as good ones!
It’s always a good idea to check with friends and neighbors, the BBB, Angie’s List, and any reliable source you can find when buying new windows! As it turns out, Mrs. D’s window company sports average ratings of “B” and “C” with many of the sources I checked online.
BUYING NEW WINDOWS TO REPLACE NEW WINDOWS?
I don’t know if Mrs. D will purchase windows from Ringer Windows. She’s dealing with the other company at present. Do your homework when buying new windows. Don’t let her story be yours!